Steamboat Springs School District Approved to Become Single District Administrative Unit
December 4, 2023 - Steamboat Springs, Colo. - The Steamboat Springs School District (SSSD) announced today it has been approved by the Colorado Department of Education to become a single district Administrative Unit (AU).
An AU can be a school district, a Board of Cooperative Educational Services (BOCES), or a state Charter School Institute (CSI). SSSD becoming its own AU means it will withdraw from the Northwest Colorado Board of Cooperative Education Services (NW BOCES) and give the District more autonomy over programs like special education, gifted programming, and professional learning.
“By concentrating on the distinct needs of students in our district who require special education services, the Administrative Unit can consolidate resources, expertise, and coordination to provide more tailored and comprehensive services,” said Dr. Celine Wicks, Superintendent. “We have worked closely with NW BOCES and other member school districts to ensure they are well-positioned for our departure.”
The SSSD Board of Education approved the process for the district to apply to become its own AU in December 2022. The NW BOCES Board also approved the request to proceed with the application on January 12, 2023.
“The main motivation to apply to become our own AU was the students,” said Kristen Atwood, SSSD’s Director of Exceptional Student Services. “This means we will have greater flexibility to provide high-quality educational services to SSSD’s exceptional students in a more efficient and effective manner.”
NW BOCES is a cooperative service agency providing special education, professional learning, grant coordination, alternative teacher licensure, induction programs, and other services to its member school districts. Members of NW BOCES include Hayden School District, West Grand School District, East Grand School District, North Park School District, South Routt School District, and Moffat County School District. MCSD is also an independent AU but is an associate member. SSSD will remain an associate member of the NW BOCES. This means SSSD will still be able to contract with the BOCES for services if needed, but SSSD would no longer have a voting member on the NW BOCES board.
“CDE recognizes that both SSSD and the NW BOCES are strongly committed to meeting the needs of all students and encourages both entities to continue to work together to create effective programs to improve the educational outcomes of children and youth with disabilities served through special education,” said Dr. Paul Foster, CDE Executive Director of Exceptional Student Services.
Visit the CDE’s website to learn more about the requirements for a school district to become its own AU and to find a list of Colorado school districts that serve as their own AU.
Laura Milius, Director of Communications